August 10th, 2012
01:55 AM ET

U.S. in first effort to clean up Agent Orange in Vietnam

The United States has pitched in for the first time to clean up part of the toxic legacy left by the millions of gallons of the chemical compound code named Agent Orange that it dumped on Vietnam during the war there in the 1960s and '70s.

The U.S. military used Agent Orange, also known as dioxin, to kill trees and plants that blocked visibility from the air during the Vietnam War. But the chemical, which can cause cancer and birth defects, also harmed humans and left areas of Vietnam contaminated.

In an effort to start addressing this noxious remnant of the war, the U.S. and Vietnamese governments, along with partnering organizations, are treating a contaminated zone at the airport of the central Vietnamese city of Danang.

Workers will dig up soil, stockpile it, and treat it using high temperatures that break down the dioxin.


Filed under: U.S. • World
soundoff (41 Responses)
  1. Sinfully Yours

    So is this the military's equivelent of someone calling a plumber to unclog the shltter?

    August 10, 2012 at 6:57 am | Report abuse |
  2. Philip

    @Sinfully Yours. How is it that you are sinfully anyones let alone mine?
    I don't get it. Pls. explain. Was it a sin for US to denude N. Vietnam? Was it a crime where the criminal is required to repay even if forgiven of his sins?

    August 10, 2012 at 7:11 am | Report abuse |
  3. Superman

    It was a crime for the US just to step into vietnam phillip we should of never even been there and all this could of been avoided

    August 10, 2012 at 9:08 am | Report abuse |
  4. banasy©

    The United States *should* help to clean up the mess they caused...isn't that one of the prices of war?

    August 10, 2012 at 10:14 am | Report abuse |
  5. fernace

    Exactly @banasy! I'm surprised the stuff has been left to poison the area for so long, but better late than Never, I suppose!

    August 10, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  6. Philip

    Good point, banasy. Like Germany, who lost WWI and so was required to pay for cleaning up the mess made. It's hard to bring dead people back to life, though.

    August 10, 2012 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
  7. bobcat (in a hat)©

    You "may" be able to clean it up off the grounds 0f viet nam, but after you exposed us to it, now we have to live with whatever happens because of it. Not to mention the civlian population that's had to contend for last four decades. That's always the way, they know how to break it, but not how to fix it.

    August 10, 2012 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  8. dazzle ©

    One of the conditions I've seen a lot in working with vets is chloracne. Forty years later some still bear the scars of this on the arms, legs, and face.

    August 10, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
  9. Philip

    gm@bobcat. Exactly who is this "they" you refer to? (or tell a joke. your call) 🙂

    August 10, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • bobcat (in a hat)©

      gm @ Philip

      "They" as the powers that be who make the decisions to use these poisons without knowing the long term effects of their "decisions". I am one of thse veterans exposed to this and am now paying the price.

      August 10, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Beff "Skunk" Jaxter

    What about the LSD they sprayed over there? MK Ultra in the jungle?? Nawwwwwww.

    August 10, 2012 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Mary

    @ bobcat (in a hat)©, I am so very sorry to hear that. Having to deal with all that, while making others laugh... 😉
    Hope your weekend goes well buddy! Thanks again

    August 10, 2012 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobcat (in a hat)©

      @ Mary

      Thank you for that. There are many others who are much worse off than I. To dwell in the past is the worst thing a person can do. It doesn't change things, it just makes one bitter towards the entire world. You learn to deal and move on. The poor ole me story gets old. You can explain one time, and needs not be said again, as everyone already knows.

      August 10, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  12. james ainoris

    This stuff was sprayed along power lines and rail road tracks up until 1979...used by state and federal agencies... I rode dirt bikes through these areas as a kid and now am very sick... We should take care of americans first....many brave young men were injured or killed in that war... and are heros! I challenge anyone to research how many innocent south veitnamese were murdered by communists after america left in 1975?...In Laos and Cambodia millions massacred after we left jane fonda types! Hippies and anti americans hid in college or left america like cowards then later begged to come back... we should never let them return...hypocrites! Now we give veitnam millions while our veterans cant find jobs or housing.....proper medical care etc. Dow Corning should pay all victims not tax payers.... Shalom Jim ainoris

    August 10, 2012 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • bobcat (in a hat)©


      August 10, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Philip

    He he. Good one bobcat. I had to read it twice to get it. Those are my favs. And I never have understood men who seek to revenge themselves by attacking the man caught in the act. Look underneath of him and you'll find the culprit.
    @james the VA dumping wounded vets off in downtown LA when funds dry up instead of busting military enti tlement fraudsters?

    August 10, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  14. saywhat

    It was not only the horror of Agent Orange , there was Napalm. What shall we clean up? History?
    And to think that the Bishops of America had declared Vietnam War 'A holy Crusade".
    Thanks @bobcat for the relief.

    August 10, 2012 at 1:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Philip

    Boo, hiss. he he. Here's one:
    A gay man walks into a saloon with his little ankle biter humpy dog, and the two of them jump-up on a barstool in perfect tandem. "Gimme a scotch and wahtah pwease" asks the gay man of the barkeep who replies "We don't serve your kind 'round hear!" The gayman put his hands on his hips and mustered his meanest gay look. "Give me a goll darned scotch and wahtah or I'll sick my doggy Wovah on you."
    The bartender leaned over the bar and took a look at the pipsqueek of a dog and started LOL. "Sick 'em Wovah!" commanded the gayman. The little dog jumped-up onto the bar and barked "bowsy wowsy". 🙂

    August 10, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
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